Many First Ladies have been “famous” or known for certain specific things. For example, Nancy Reagan was known for her red dresses. Hillary Clinton was known for staying married to a philandering husband. Mamie Eisenhower was known as a very gracious hostess. Now, it’s Michelle Obama’s turn. Michelle is the VERY FIRST First Lady to become visible in “attack” politics. A dignified, transcendent first lady? No way. Michelle is going to break with a hundred years of tradition and play the role of attack dog, heaping derision on Barack Obama’s political opponents like no first lady before her.
Sure, she has been quite outspoken. For example, after her husband was nominated by the Democrat party in 2008, she said, “For the first time in my adult lifetime – and not just because Barack has done well, I’m really proud of my country because it feels like hope is finally making a comeback.” BTW, Barack Obama had this “clarification“: “What she meant was, this is the first time that she’s been proud of the politics of America. She has seen large numbers of people get involved in the process, and she’s encouraged.”
Michelle Obama has not been the most popular First Lady in history, perhaps because of her vacation habits at taxpayer expense (Spain, Hawaii, Martha’s Vineyard), preaching about food (McDonald’s, chain restaurant menus and fast food), and being quite vocal with her society comments (America is ‘just downright mean’).
On Thursday, October 27, 2011, she was dispatched to Davis Island, near Tampa, Florida to mingle with people her husband most demonizes – the “rich.” At a quite large mansion on Tampa Bay, filled with the very wealthy, Michelle Obama attacked “them” – the Republicans. During her “speech” at a fund-raiser, she was in full “attack mode.” Here are a few of her comments:
- “Will we let insurance companies deny us coverage because we have preexisting conditions like breast cancer or diabetes?” I guess she forgot that insurance companies are in business to make a (gasp!) profit, and that we policy-holders ultimately pay for ‘preexisting conditions.’
- “And lets not forget about what it meant when my husband appointed those two brilliant Supreme Court justices and for the first time in history, our daughters – and our sons – watched three women take their seats on our nation’s highest court. But more importantly, let’s not forget the impact those decisions will have on our lives for decades to come – on our privacy and security, on whether we can speak freely, worship openly, and love whomever we choose. That is what’s at stake here.” Got that? Republican-appointed Supreme Court justices will block privacy and security, free speech, freedom of worship, and restrict whom we love.
- “Will we be a country where opportunity is limited to just the few at the top? Who are we? Or will we give every child a chance to succeed no matter where they’re from, or what they look like or how their money parents are – have. Who are we?” Another got that. Republican-appointed Supreme Court justices will see to it that opportunity is limited to just the few at the top.
So Michelle Obama will travel the country this election season to tell Americans just how bad it is. Unlike Ronald Reagan, who saw morning in America, Michelle Obama will tell all who will listen that Republicans want to poison the air and water, stifle free speech, oppress the religious. She will offer not an uplifting vision of what her husband’s America could be, but only a view of what Republicans’ America would be.
Traditionally, vice-presidential candidates have been the attack dogs in presidential campaigns. But, by using Michelle Obama this way, the Obama administration has struck an unprecedented low in partisanship and divisiveness.
But that’s just my opinion.